Nearly $16,000 in drugs and over $5,000 in cash were confiscated and a Dayton, Ohio man arrested after Portsmouth police officers responded to a suspicious situation Monday night. Jerome McCleskey, 20, is facing charges of possession of drugs-heroin, a felony of the first degree, possession of drugs-methamphetamine, a fifth degree felony, trafficking in drugs containing heroin, a first degree felony and resisting arrest, a first degree misdemeanor.
Portsmouth Police Operations Captain Lynn Brewer said at about 11:45 p.m. Monday officers were called to the local Kroger store located at 811 Gay Street, Portsmouth, Ohio to investigate a report of two suspicious males being on the property. One male subject was reported to be waiting outside while the other subject was said to be wandering around the store acting suspicious.
Upon the arrival of officer Chris Hedrick and Sgt. Joel Robinson, they contacted the first male subject outside the store and obtained his identity. The subject was advised of the complaint and police performed a warrant check on him.
Officers said they then approached the subject inside the store and informed him of the call. According to officers, they asked the subject for identification and he told them he did not have any. The subject reportedly gave officers his social security number and when an officer ran a warrant check on him a hit came back identifying him as Jerome McCleskey age 20, and revealing that there was a warrant for his arrest from the Montgomery County Sheriff’s office.
Officers said they advised McCleskey of the warrant and instructed him to place his hands behind his back. When Hedrick started to handcuff McCleskey the report says he tried to pull free from officers and flee. Officers said they were able to grab McCleskey and all three men went to the floor where a fight ensued before officers could apply handcuffs to McCleskey and take him into custody.
Brewer said on the search incident to arrest, McCleskey was found to be in possession of 155 grams of a substance that field tested positive for heroin and 1.5 grams of a substance that field tested positive for methamphetamine. The combined street value of the drugs is approximately $15,650. The report says McCleskey also had $5,128 in cash in his possession.
MeCleskey was lodged in the Scioto County Jail. He was scheduled to be arraigned in Portsmouth Municipal Court Tuesday morning. Brewer said the case will be presented to the Scioto County grand jury where additional charges may be filed.
“We will definitely be asking the grand jury to consider additional charges due to the fact that both officers, as well as McCleskey received injury in the fight,” Brewer said. “The injury to one of the officers required medical treatment at Southern Ohio Medical Center. The extent of the officers injuries are not known at this time.”
If McCleskey is convicted as charged, he could face up to a total of 23 years in prison and fines totaling up to $41,000.
The investigation is continuing on the incident involving McCleskey and anyone that may have additional information on his suspected drug trafficking activities is encouraged to contact the Southern Ohio Drug Task Force at 740-354-DRUG (3784) or you can call the Portsmouth Police Department at 740-353-4101 or 740-354-1600.